2:28 p.m., June 23, 2009----Irvin H. “Irv” Carty Jr., who became the first black student-athlete to earn a varsity letter for the University of Delaware athletics program in 1951, died June 12 at his home in Wilmington, Del. Mr. Carty, 77, also was the first black student to live on the UD campus.
A native of Wilmington, he attended Howard High School before enrolling at the University of Delaware in 1951. He was a two-year member of head coach Ken Steers' Blue Hen men's cross country teams and led the team to a 5-1 dual record and sixth place finish at the Middle Atlantic Conference championships in 1951 and a 4-1 mark and fourth place finish at the MAC meet in 1952. He earned two letters, becoming the first black student-athlete to earn that distinction at UD in 1951.
Mr. Carty entered the U.S. Army 82nd Airborne Division and left the service as a lieutenant. He later rose to the rank of major with the National Guard.
He worked for the Delaware Department of Welfare as a case worker and later served 30 years with the United State Postal Service, retiring in1989 as director of employee labor relations for the state of Delaware and the eastern shore of Maryland.
Services were held June 17. Donations may be made in his name to St. Joseph's Catholic Church, 1012 French St., Wilmington, DE 19801.